Guest Speakers


Tuesday 11 January 2022
Peter Kirkwood OAM- Didgeridoo player and an explanation of the Didgeridoo’s  Cultural significance
Several years ago, whilst on a business trip in Alice Springs, Peter acquired his first didgeridoo. It took a couple of years before he decided to learn how to play. Peter has also become a student of the Didgeridoo and will explain its cultural significance.



 
Tuesday 14 December 2021 - Christmas meeting - No speaker - 











 
Tuesday 9 November Guest Speaker (via ZOOM)
Christine Sykes Novelist and Memoir writer Christine Sykes is a novelist and memoir writer, who worked as a Public Servant for 30 years and volunteered at ‘Dress for Success’, Sydney for four years.  Christine’s first novel “The Changing Room” was inspired by the experiences of the women behind the charity ‘Dress for Success’.
When Christine was 8 years old Gough Whitlam moved into her street in Cabramatta which had an influence on her life and consequently Christine wrote “Gough and Me”.
 
 
Tuesday 12 October 2021 (Via Zoom)
The Title of Hilary May Black’s talk for our October meeting is “The Westmead Institute for Medical Research - Finding Cures Saving Lives
The Westmead Institute for Medical Research (WIMR) is a leading Australian medical research institute, who research and develop new and effective treatments, cures and preventions for some of the world’s leading health issues.
Hilary is the Manager – Gifts in Wills at the WIMR. Prior to this Hilary was a lawyer with international law firms and previously, a film production manager and secondary school teacher.  Her talk will focus on research of Covid -19, ovarian cancer, eye health and heart disease.
 

Tuesday 14 September 2021 (via Zoom)            
Jodie and Greg Burton from Serendipity Moves will be joining our Zoom meeting this month as guest speakers. They will be providing tips & suggestions on how to plan for a downsize, including what to take and what not to take when you downsize or declutter. How to prepare physically & emotionally and what you need to consider. Often people put of the thought of relocating into retirement living because the actual process of sorting and moving seems overwhelming.


Tuesday 10 August 2021 (ZOOM)
If you’ve ever listened to the Gardening programme on ABC radio you’ll be familiar with this month’s guest speaker Judy Horton, OAM.  Judy will tell us all about “The History of The Australian Backyard”.
In the Australian Day Honours in 2018 Judy was awarded  an OAM for her contribution to the promotion of gardening. Judy has been the recipient of the Horticultural Media Association  Hall of Fame Gold Laurel and NSW Nursery Industry Association’s  Award for her contribution to gardening Media.  In 2012 she was presented with the Golden Wattle Award, the highest award from the Australian Institute of Horticulture.



Tuesday 13 July 2021 - Arthur Pearce 

This month our Guest Speaker comes from the National Maritime Museum, Arthur Pearce will be talking about the “History of Sydney Ferries”. I’m sure we’ve all crossed the “heads” on the way to Manly on a famous  green and cream Sydney ferry at least once.It will be interesting to find out more about the ferries history.




 



Tuesday 8 June 2021 - Tom Ware

We’re looking forward to having Tom Ware back again, he last spoke at our club in 2019. Tom is know as “The Prince of Story Telling” and always keeps us intrigued with his stories. This month he will telling us about two true stories. “An aviation incident at Bankstown” and “An incident over Dubbo in 1962”

Besides Story telling Tom has been a sailor, an air-ground aviation radio-operator, and a police radio operator. He has also been a foundry labour, truck driver, laboratory assistant, clerk and even an Antarctic Expeditioner




Tuesday 11 May 2021 Jim Haynes -OAM. “How Songs Work
Jim entertained us in November 2018 and is back again for our May meeting.

A professional entertainer since 1988, Jim has written many songs, recorded for Festival, Sony, EMI and ABC, he had a national hit with ‘Don’t Call Wagga Wagga Wagga’ and is the Australiana expert on 2GB. He was awarded the Order of Australia Medal in the Australia Day Honour's List in 2016, 'for service to the performing arts as an entertainer, author, broadcaster and historian'.





 


13 April 2021 (Face to face)
Lauren Oxenham - President Hornsby Musical Society


Lauren will be telling us more about the Hornsby Musical Society and some of the shows they have presented. Founded in 1958, Hornsby Musical Society (HMS) is one of Sydney’s premier amateur societies. Operating on a not-for-profit basis, the society has staged over 100 productions over the years at numerous venues including St Peter’s Church of England, St John’s Church of England, Asquith Boys High School, Abbotsleigh Girls High School, Mount St Benedict’s Girls College, and Hornsby RSL Club.





 


9 February 2021 (Via Zoom)

Priyanka Kulkarni from The Garvin Institute,of Medical Research,will present a talk about the Garvin which is an Australian biomedical research institute founded 1963. It is now one of Australia's largest medical research institutions with approximately 750 scientists, students and support staff.
Thanks to cutting-edge ‘Nanopore’ genome sequencing technology, researchers at the Garvan Institute of Medical Research and the Kirby Institute at UNSW Sydney have developed the most rapid coronavirus genome sequencing strategy in Australia to date.  This technological advance has the potential to provide critical, timely clues on how cases of SARS-CoV-2 infection are linked. 

 

12 January 2020 (Via Zoom)

Brittany Mitchell - What is The Australian Museum's FrogID Project? 

Brittany Mitchell is a PhD candidate at UNSW Sydney and a FrogID Validator for the Australian Museum. She completed her Bachelor of Science at the University of Sydney in 2016, double majoring in Biology and Immunology, before completing her honours in 2019 at UNSW Sydney and the Australian Museum. She is a passionate conservationist with research interests in how amphibians are responding to an ever-changing world – more specifically the effect that human activity and climate has on amphibian behaviour, ecology, and immunology. Her research relies heavily upon the data from the Australian Museum’s citizen science project – FrogID; and one particular area of her PhD will be using this data to examine the effects of fire on the persistence and breeding behaviours of frogs across the continent.

Brittany’s talk will be focusing on the following:
-            What is the Australian Museum’s FrogID project?
-             How can you get involved?
-             What frogs reside in your local area (Hornsby and Hills Shire)
-             How does the data inform conservation for Australia’s frogs?
-             Various aspects of her proposed PhD research, especially that regarding fire ecology 


8 December 2020(Via Zoom)
Tom Sweeney.President of the Willoughby Theatre Company

Tom Sweeney is President of the Willoughby Theatre Company, which in 2019 celebrated 62 years of staging  Broadway musicals to Patrons on the Northshore and wider Sydney. Tom will present a “behind the scenes” description of how musicals are actually chosen cast, and staged and how it is now a big business and not just a hobby.




 


6 October 2020 (Via Zoom)
Kristy Wan - Marketing & Events Manager and Mark Bundy – Operations Manager from Rookwood Cemetery

They gave us a very informative talk  about the History of Rookwood Cemetery and the ‘Notables’ Buried there. Rookwood  Cemetery is the oldest and most multicultural working cemetery in Australia and has been operating continuously since 1867 and covers burials for over 90 religions!  Its grounds tell the story of Sydney’s history and cultural diversity.  Mark & Kristy had some great stories to tell including cemetery jokes and videos of  ‘notables’.  






 


8 September 2020 (via Zoom)
Senior Constable Alison Brown - Crime Prevention Officer - The Hills Area Command     

Alison joined our Zoom meeting today, from her mobile phone, to speak to us about Crime Prevention & Scams in the Hills District and beyond.  Alison has been based in the Hills for 4 years and drew our attention to various scams and how to avoid them!  Alison also advised us all to do our own credit check as a method to see if there’s been any identity fraud on our own accounts that we may not be aware of!  To protect our homes when on holidays Alison suggested many measures we can take to prevent theft, etc.  She also spoke about elder financial abuse and how to detect the problems..  It was a very informative talk and reminded us all to stay alert!


 


11 August 2020 (via Zoom)
Sally Baitch & Arthur Ongley

Sally Baitch, Maxx Music’s Community Music Coordinator, was our Guest Speaker on 11 August 2020, for our clubs first Zoom monthly meeting. Previously Head of Community and Adult Learning at Sage Gateshead in the north of England. Sally is no stranger to finding a way to involve people in music,  “Singing has always played a big part in my life and I have seen how singing and playing an instrument, can really change people’s lives. There are particular benefits for seniors, who may be facing a variety of life changing situations”.
Sally talked about the benefits of Music particularly during COVID 19 and introduced us to a number of press articles and Covid 19 music clips to prove her point.




Arthur Ongley the Ukulele Master and Denise followed Sally and played a few entertaining songs to add to the spirit of the meeting and to demonstrate what Sally had to say. They came across well on Zoom and kept our feet tapping. Arthur has been playing the Ukulele since 2004.
.



 


11 February 2020
David Rosenberg - Pine Gap
David spoke at our Club almost 5 years ago but he has since published a book and has many more interesting details to share with us about his facinating story. David was employed as a civilian by the United States National Security Agency (NSA) for 23 years, completing his last 18 years with the Agency managing his team in Operations at the Joint Defence Facility Pine Gap in Alice Springs. Hardie Grant Publishers released his book, Pine Gap: The Inside Story Of The NSA In Australia, the first book about the NSA’s operations at a satellite ground site by an individual.
More details of David's story can be found here 









 


12 November 2019
David and Wendy Wilson

Bee keeping (They will also have some honey for purchase following the meeting)


8 Ocotober 2019
Susan Butler  - Australian Slang

Sue was the Editor of the ‘Macquarie Dictionary’, Australia’s national dictionary, and as Editor was largely responsible for the selection of new words for the dictionary.
Sue wrote the ‘Dinkum Dictionary’, published in its third edition in 2009. In 2014 she wrote ‘The Aitch Factor’, a commentary on usage matters in ‘Australian English’. Sue is a regular commentator on ‘Australian English’ on radio, television and the internet and was a TEDxSydney speaker in 2015.
In June 2018 Sue was made an Officer of the Order of Australia and also became an Honorary Lecturer at the ANU in the College of Asia and the Pacific.

Sue’s website is www.suebutler.com.au where she blogs on aspects of ‘Australian English’.



 




10 September 2019
Patrick Dodd “The Governor's Travels-Touring with Lachlan & Elizabeth Macquarie”

Patrick's talk at our Club several years ago about the Treasures of the State Library received rave reviews at the time. He was also our Tour guide in May this year when we toured the State Library. His talk is sure to be very interesting and not to be missed. 
   
More details about Patrick can be found through this link








 



Tuesday 13 August 2019
 Mary Ann Napper and Megumi Bennett
Mary Ann visited our Club in July 2018 and
spoke to us about the book she had written entitled "Born to fly". Her talk was very interesting and she is making a return visit yo talk to us about her new book "Natures Child".
Mary Ann’s book “Nature Child” is about Megumi Bennett internationally acclaimed Bonsai artist who lives in Sydney and was able to give our club a Bonsai Demonstration. 

In a mountain village in Nagano Prefecture a seed of love for nature is embedded into a small girl’s heart.
This Asian inspired Australian story begins in Tokyo when the city is being ravaged by World War Two. Yoko Ugai’s (Megumi Bennett) formative years mould her into a young woman who decides to devote her life to nature. Lured by a fascination for Australian native flora, she turns down two marriage proposals to travel to Australia on a journey of horticultural discovery.

Megumi’s unique story will appeal not only to garden lovers worldwide but also to anyone who has been charmed by the exotic locales, tranquil gardens, temples, shrines and culture of Japan. Her horticultural achievements have made a significant contribution to Australian life and are the perfect example of how immigrants have enriched our culture.

‘Mr Saburo Kato, the world’s greatest ever Bonsai Master and peace exponent, watched in awe like we all did as Megumi Bennett united Australia and Japan in a bridge of friendship with roots, stems, leaves, flowers and artistic flair – a living growing organism. Congratulations to Mary Ann Napper for her biographical skills to capture Nature’s Child perfectly.’Graham Ross VMM, Horticulturist, author and television broadcaster

 


Tuesday 9 July 2019
Lt Col Peter Sweeney RFD (Ret'd)
Peter served for 35 years in the Australian Army Reserve as an infantry officer and retired with the rank of Lieutenant Colonel.  He was awarded the Reserve Force Decoration for his service.Peter is a military historian, battlefield guide and speaker on Australian military history.
His talk today will be 
The Battle of the Coral Sea 4-8 May 1942
The first major naval battle in the Pacific Theatre of World War II.This sea battle was the first naval action involving aircraft carriers, the first naval battle 'fought in the air', as well as the first in which neither side's ships sighted or fired directly upon the other.

Japanese forces had decided to invade and occupy Port Moresby in PNG. The plan to accomplish this, called Operation MO, involved several major units of Japan's Combined Fleet, including two fleet carriers and a light carrier to provide air cover for the invasion fleets.  The US learned of the Japanese plan through signal intellegence based in Austalia and sent two United States Navy carrier task forces and a joint Australian-American cruiser force, under the overall command of American Admiral Frank J Fletcher, to oppose the Japanese offensive.

HMAS Australia and HMAS Hobart, cruisers of the Royal Australian Navy, were part of the joint cruiser force
 


Tuesday 11 June 2019
Graham Simms WELL-KNOWN AUSSIES YOU’VE (PROBABLY) NEVER HEARD OF

Like all cultures, we have our ‘famous’ people, but, as Mike McClellan sang, ‘fame is just a momentary curse’. I present a personal selection of Aussies who deserved,and in a very few cases,enjoyed a fleeting fame, but are now largely forgotten or unknown. They include a multi-sport medal winner and film star, a world champion boxer, a remarkable naturalist, a young woman who became revered in India for her daring deeds on the silver screen, A strange little man who pushed a trolley cart around Sydney, a redoubtable woman who sold newspapers for over 25 years on the streets of Sydney, a strange little man who pushed a trolley, and two unique dogs.

 


Tuesday 14 May 2019
Ann Howard - Australian Service Women during and after WW2

Ann Howard loves life. She is an enthusiastic traveller and adventurer. She has ridden elephants through the Sumatran jungle; climbed Anak Krakatau when it was erupting; made a 14,000 feet free-fall from a plane and rock climbed in Tahiti. She brings this enthusiasm to her writing and studying. She enjoys her grandchildren, her partners musical gift, her dogs, garden and a good single malt; not necessarily in that order. After writing several prize winning history books on the Hawkesbury River region, Ann has turned her focus to Australia’s WWII social history, with ‘A Carefree War’ about the child evacuees in NSW, and ‘You’ll Be Sorry’, documenting the lives of Australian service women during and after WWII.

 


Tuesday 9 April 2019
Cassandra O'Conner - Northconnex

NorthConnex is a nine kilometre tunnel which will link the M1 Pacific Motorway at Wahroonga to the Hills M2 Motorway at West Pennant Hills. Major tunnel excavation is now complete, with the final breakthrough happening in early October at the future M1 southbound on ramp in Wahroonga. We are now carrying out final tunnelling activities to refine the tunnel’s shape and transitioning into the fit-out phase. This involves removing the last spoil from the tunnel while we excavate trenches for electrical conduits and drainage. Cassandra will give us an update on this project.








 


Tuesday 12 March 2019
Club AGM and Changeover lunch


Tuesday 12 February 2019
Tom Ware - Story Teller - 
Lost Over the Pacific

Tom Ware has been entertaining audiences with stories for thirty years, and more than 43,000 people have heard his stories. Tom joined his first Toastmaster club in 1972 and is a current member of Toastmasters International. He has also been a member of Rostrum Clubs of NSW, the National Speakers Association of Australia, and the Australian Storytellers Guild and is certified at ‘professional standard’ with this last. He was a grand finalist with both Rostrum in 1980 and at the Festival of Sydney in 1982. Tom’s background is colourful: he has has served as a radio-operator on ships, in civil aviation, and with the police.   Additionally, he’s been a postal worker, a foundry labourer, a truckie, a laboratory assistant, a clerk – and has even spent a year as an Antarctic expeditioner.




 


Tuesday 8 January 2019
Ben Jones - Care Connect

Hello, My name is Ben Jones and  I work for an organisation called Care Connect who enable people to live in their homes independently. We are approved government providers and assist our clients with accessing government subsided programmes with any support they require.
 
Click here for small flyer with some basic information on some of the services that can be accessed.






 


Tuesday 11 December 2018
Special Christmas meeting










 


Tuesday 13 November 2018
Jim Haynes OAM  - Australia's unbelievable true stories & things you thought you know.

As the originator of the morning shows at the Tasmworth Festival, Jim hosted his own variety shows there for 27 years and celebrated 32 years at the festival. He still performs as an entertainer and speaker, has presented the Spoken Work section of the Port Fairy Festival for over 20 years and presents Australiana programs on Macquarie Radio Network and ABC Radio. To see Jim's full Bio click here




 


Tuesday 9 October 2018
Stephen Bock - Climbing Mount Everest

Stephen's experiences of extensive climbing in the Himalayas, Andes and the mountainous regions of New Zealand enabled him to become a part of the Australian Everest Expedition 2010 team and fulfil a life-long ambition. He will tell us alittle about his amazing adventure
 


Tuesday 11 September 2018
Shona Lorigan - ORRCA assisting injured and stranded seal mammals 
ORRCA stands for the Organisation for the Rescue and Research of Cetaceans in Australia. Put simply, our primary focus is on the preservation and welfare of Whales, Dolphins, Seals and Dugongs in Australian waters






 


Tuesday 14 August 2018
Helena and Michael Berger - Walking the El Camino Trail 

Club members Michael and Helena recently completed the 790km El Camino trail in Spain and France and will tell us about their epic walk as well as show us some of their photos. Not to be missed.



 


Tuesday 10 July 2018
Mary Ann Knapper - The pitfalls and advantages of self publishing novel "Born to Fly" 

Mary Ann Napper commenced her hobby of writing at the age of sixty-five. In 2014, she published her debut novel, Born to Fly. Since then, several of her short stories have been published in anthologies and feature articles published in Autism Parenting magazine and News.com.au. She is regularly invited to give guest speaker talks to community groups. See Mary Ann's full bio here




 


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